UK Tabloids Sink to New Depths in March

18 April 2006

Lest our headline be misunderstood, the 'depths' in question were those of circulation, not factuality.

Britain's tabloid daily newspapers, collectively known as 'red-tops' due to their mutual taste in vermillion banners, sank below the six million circulation mark last month - an all time nadir - dropping from 6.04m in February to 5.97m in March.

Even Rupert Murdoch's shining market leader The Sun began to set, falling by 1.09% in a single month to 3,110,999 copies - its lowest level in thirty-two years.

The health of number two red top, the Daily Mirror, was in even more parlous state, dropping 1.33% to a new low of 1,634,584. The Daily Star also stopped twinkling with a slide of 1.6% to 783,511.

In the mid-market sector, the Daily Mail sagged 1.7% to 2,397,768 copies, while the Daily Express crept marginally upward with a 0.49% increase to 831,923.

At the swanky end of the market, the only paper to show a marked improvement was the reinvigorated Financial Times, up 1.7% to 445,986. The Times and the Daily Telegraph were all but static, inching up 0.04% to 669,973 and 901,491 respectively.

The Guardian fell 0.81% to 379,835, its lowest ebb since a major relaunch in September when it sold 404,187 copies; while The Independent suffered the largest shift in fortune with a slump of 3.84% to 255,849 copies.

Data sourced from BrandRepublic (UK); additional content by WARC staff